Hamilton Child Care Centre provides a rich learning environment full of possibilities for learning through play. Children engage with the natural world, loose parts, and carefully provisioned spaces focusing on dispositions for learning, interests, and challenge.
Hamilton Child Care Centre is a non-profit, community based long day care centre operating within a beautiful, converted federation house. The centre is open Monday to Friday from 7.30am to 5.30pm. We are closed for all public holidays and a shut down period over Christmas and New Years.
Our vision is to be leaders in creating confident and resilient children within a learning community. Our mission is to encourage children to pursue learning together, in an engaging and nurturing environment, supported by dedicated and caring educators.
Our centre is unique not only for its striking environments, but our model of mixed-age, or family grouping where younger and older children are part of the learning community, spending large parts of their days together. The centre ensures this aspect is celebrated within all that we do, and it is wonderful for siblings to be able to work and play together throughout their days. It allows for a home-like environment and provides children with a sense of belonging as our spaces here reflect the familiar environments of home.
Hamilton Child Care Centre was opened in 1986 after the need for a long day care centre in the Hamilton area was identified. The centre is fully incorporated under the Incorporated Associations Act, and the house is rented from Newcastle City Council.
As we are a community-based, not for profit enterprise, this ensures daily fees represent value for money and any profit made at the end of each year is returned to the centre. This is done through upgrades to the premises, buying of resources and equipment for the children. This ensures sound financial management of the centre is maintained.
Reggio Emilia Inspired
The Educational Project of Reggio Emilia inspires and influences the way the educators think and work with the children of Hamilton Child Care Centre. We understand that every child is a competent and capable citizen of our learning community. Each with unique learning dispositions, knowledge and interests that must first be acknowledged is key to our everyday practices.
Other approaches and theorists also influence our decision making within our teaching practices. Foremost though is the Reggio Emilia approach to educating young children.
As a funded community-based service, Hamilton Child Care Centre is managed by a committee of parents whose children attend the centre. The centre is fully incorporated under the Incorporated Associations Act and an Annual General Meeting is held each year in February-March to elect a committee.
To maintain our successful continued operation, the centre must have a fully formed committee each year. Management committee meetings are held once per month where the director reports to the committee about the day to day running of the centre to ensure open communication between the educators and committee is maintained in relation to all aspects of service delivery.
The centre undertakes fundraising and social events across the year and a separate sub-committee is formed to organise these events.
Funds raised from these events aim to help resource the centre with items the yearly budget may not be able to fund in full. Parents are invited to participate in the life of the centre through involvement with as many of these events as they feel comfortable.
Licensing and Regulation
Hamilton Child Care Centre is licensed for 36 children per day by the Department of Education, Skills and Employment, Early Care and Education Directorate under the National Law, the Education and Care Services National Regulations 2011 and the National Quality Standards (NQS).
NATIONAL QUALITY STANDARDS AND ACECQA RATING
Hamilton Child Care Centre last completed an Assessment and Rating process with the Department of Education, Early Childhood Education Directorate in 2019. Assessed against the National Quality Standards (NQS) the centre is currently rated as ‘Meeting’ in five of the seven quality areas (2, 3, 4, 6, 7) and ‘Exceeding’ in two quality areas (1 & 5) with an overall rating of ‘Meeting’.
The process is designed to assist services to see their strengths and determine areas for continuous improvement through self-reflection and improvement in daily practice.
For more information regarding the NQS process, please speak with an educator or visit the www.acecqa.gov.au website.